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BITE user comments - Runningdog

Comments by Runningdog

The Barley Mow, Broomhill

At present the Barley Mow is closed, although, I'm told, not for long.

15 Jan 2010 23:00

The White Heather, Ferndown

The Whie Heather is not my favourite pub by a long chalk, but it is nowhere near as bad as the reviews and the ratings make it sound.
The car park restrictions have gone, although I have to say I agree with all the angry comments that were made. The mangement has changed again and the pub once again shows sport and serves decent enough grub
As for beer, only one ale along with all the usual lagers, Guinness, wines and soft drinks.
The place is fairly clean, the beers expensive and it can still get rowdy. All in all a fairly typical town centre pub, better than many, worse than a lot.
My rating 4.

23 Sep 2009 21:33

The Crown, Winterborne Stickland

Winterborne Stickland is a pretty village, typically Dorset, and in it's heart, at it's heart maybe, is the Crown. A good-sized building, it has a useful car park, which, in Stickland, is a bonus..
In new hands, the interior is clean and simple with a large bar and a smaller eating area. A Ringwood, spell that Marstons, pub, it carries four ales, all from Ringwood (Best, Filly Drift, Fortyniner and Old Thumper), lagers, wine, cider and soft drinks.
Food plays a big part in this pubs philosophy and, by and large, what you get on your plate is well worth any reasonable wait. Good, just that little bit different, without putting style over substance. The service is excellent, particularily considering how short a time the team have been together. This is a true locals pub, but one that caters for, and welcomes, the passing and holiday trade.
My rating is 8. The Crown is a work in progress and, perhaps, I'm judging it on what I expect it to be. Having said that I don't expect it to let me down.

20 Sep 2009 18:44

The Boat House, Matlock

Someone else has called this a 'good honest boozer', and you could not put it better. I've used this pub two or three times a year for some time now, it's a place that changes a bit, but always stays the same.
A small pub, if a bit Tardis-like inside, it stands on the A6, just beyond the railway bridge as you head for Matlock Bath. The car-park is a useful size and easy to use, if a bit remote.
There are 3 or 4 real ale pumps alongside a selection of lagers, cider, spirits etc. The ale itself is of a reasonable quality, with a GK bias.
The food is good, simple, well-cooked and reasonably priced to the point of being cheap. The pub is family-run by folk who are still feeling their way, in the right direction there is no doubt. Since my last visit the beer has improved, the food even more so. The place is better organised and a lot cleaner.
I've put my rating up to 8, because, although on the face of it this place is nothing special, it is a very good example of that dying breed. A good honest boozer. Long may it stay so..........

11 Sep 2009 20:56

Tavern At Tansley, Tansley

A year later, little has changed. Still friendly, with good food that is neither pretentious nor expensive. A selection of the usual lagers, spirits, cider, soft drinks etc. The ale is nothing to write home about however.
My rating remains 7

11 Sep 2009 20:13

The Plough Inn, Adderbury

This is a note rather than a review as it based on one short visit. Very quiet, about 9pm, staff and landlord seemed friendly enough. Only one beer on, Bombardier, not bad but I didn't want a second. Menu looked ordinary but that's all I can say about the food.
No rating but on the poor side of OK.

11 Sep 2009 20:05

The Rose and Crown, Charlton

Only a short review, simply to say that nothing much has changed since my earlier review. Moderate ale, moderate food, friendly staff and good service. Nearly a good pub, but no cigar.
My rating remains 6.

11 Sep 2009 19:50

The Foresters Arms, Frogham

There is little I can add to my previous reviews. This is an outstanding food-led Wadsworth pub that does beer on a level with the food. One thing I will say is that it is very busy, not just at weekends, book is the watchword.
To it's credit the Foresters remains a seriously dog-friendly pub, and, to repeat an earlier warning, beware the donkeys, they eat things. But then, this is the New Forest..........
My rating remains 9.

10 Aug 2009 22:17

The Coventry Arms, Corfe Mullen

Having enjoyed the hospitality at this pub for a long time, I write this review with considerable sadness. Three months ago I came here for a late lunch and left feeling cheated.
As ever, straight from the barrel, there was nothing wrong with the beer, apart from a limited choice. The staff were still friendly and helpful, but the food was dire. This used to be a gastro-pub in the best sense of the term. Not any longer. An ordinary menu, poorly cooked and cheaply presented food, but still, gastro prices.
I was spared only one thing, at least no one asked me if everything was O.K.
My rating has dropped from 8 to 4 and at least a point of that is loyalty.

10 Aug 2009 21:58

The Night Jar, Ferndown

After eighteen months or so my review of this pub is due for updating. Very little has changed in that time. The beer, surely the 'raison d'etre' of any Wetherspoon pub, remains good. The choice is good, the quality remains as high, if not higher, than most pubs in the country. Yes, you'll get the odd duff pint, with up to 9 real ales on and lager vanishing like water in the desert, you should expect nothing less.
It's a Wetherspoon, a good one. The place is clean, the beer's plentiful and drinkable, the foods cheap but cheerful, kids run about, blokes get drunk, coffee clogs up the bar and there are never enough staff. What do you expect. Me? I love the place..........
My rating? 8

18 May 2009 11:55

Drovers Inn, Gussage all Saints

Outstanding country pub that I like to call my 'spiritual' local. I've never come across anther quite like. Standing on the chalk hills of the Craborne Chase it looks as if it has been there forever.
First things first, you find, it you shouldn't have any trouble parking. The beer is good, usually four Ringwood ales and a Marston's guest. Marstons purchase of Ringwood Brewery hasn't harmed the beer one little bit but it has reduced the choice of the guest beers. There's cider, lager, a selection of wines and sprits and all the usual bottles. The drinks aren't cheap but the prices are unexceptional for the area.
The true glory of this place is however the food. Middle of the road prices for oustanding quality, all prepared on the premises. The choice is varied, often quirky and surprising, always worth a try.
I can't say too much about the staff, I know them all, and that clouds my judgement. To me they always they seem friendly and helpful. Dogs are welcome as are kids but bad behaviour is not tolerated from either.
A couple of tips, at weekends and BH's the Drover's can get very busy. The beer can suffer a little at time like that and the menu can look a little sparse Mondays and Tuesdays.
My rating 9. For what it is the Drover's is damn nigh perfect.

18 May 2009 11:08

The Cross Keys Inn, Mannington

An update on my previous review. The 'Keys' is now a freehose, with Ringwood ales replacing the Badger, a vast improvement in my opinion. Everything else is 'as you were'.
Just one thing, for a variety of reasons the pub is unlikely to be with us a lot longer. Visit it while you can. Love it or hate it, it's an experience not to be missed.
I've put my rating up to 10, simply because it is still with us and will be much missed if it goes..........

18 May 2009 10:37

The Barley Mow, Broomhill

As my earlier review of this pub seems to have vanished, I'll have to start again. In a tucked away location the 'Mow' is a fair-sized Badger dining pub with a large car-park.
The beer, if you like Badger, is usually well kept, Best, Hopping Hare and Tanglefoot on my last visit. This may be a dining pub, but I found the menu uninteresting, and my meal bland and uninspiring. I know at least two Badger pubs in the general area that make a much better job of similar menus.
For a Badger pub, I like this place, I really do. It has had it's ups and downs recently but nowadays it a clean and friendly place with well drinkable, if expensive, beer. A real shame about the food.........
My rating remains 6. OK, but could do so much better.

18 May 2009 10:01

The Anchor at Shapwick, Shapwick

A year on and in many repects this place just gets better. The food is excellent at worst. Service in the restaurant is consistently good, with smiles all round. My one caveat is a gradual slide of emphasis away from the drinker to the diner.
That said it is still one of my favourite places. Good beer with a mainly local and West Country emphasis. Excellent food, not cheap mind you, but quality doesn't ever come cheap. You will still be welcome if you only go for a drink but at busy lunchtimes you may well be crowded out by the foodies.
Not a big place, it is in a small, out of the way, village and you will, most like, arrive by car, parking might be a problem. Very important tip,don't forget to book......
My rating remains 8. I'd like to give 8.5 but BitE won't let me.

18 May 2009 09:22

The Foresters Arms, Frogham

Just an update, little has changed since January, see below, it has simply got better,
However, my rating has changed, it is now 9.

14 Sep 2008 19:14

The Boat House, Matlock

Over the years I've liked this pub, I stll do. Shame about the beer.
The beer could have been a one off bad day, I certainly hope so. The food however was as usual, fair to middling but inexpesive. That said, I reckon in the Boathouse you get a bit more than you pay for.
Staff, as always, friendly.
My rating 7. It seems to have changed little over the years and that is it's strength.

13 Sep 2008 16:09

The Gate Inn, Tansley

Not a lot to say or like about this pub except the landlord was friendly. Beer was piss, didn't try the food and the quiz machine cheats, big style.........
My rating 3. At least it is there and the landlord is friendly.

13 Sep 2008 15:57

Tavern At Tansley, Tansley

A second and a third visit a fortnight ago underlined all my earlier comments.
My rating remains 7. This is one of th friedliest and most obliging pubs it has been my privilege to vist.

13 Sep 2008 15:50

The Devonshire Arms, Beeley

The 'Devonshire Arms' is a pub I've known, on and off, for a long time, I expect a lot from it. Great beer whose quality in matched by the food. In the past the atmosphere and the staff have been great. It's all still there, sort of.
The beer is unchanged, good choice, outstanding quality, but they don't want you at the bar. The food is still very good, if very pricey. 11.95 for a beefburger and fries is bloody expensive, know matter how good it is. Then again, good doesn't come close to describing it.
The staff are still friendly and helpful, but more in the style of restaurant than pub. Nonetheless, they will sill enjoy a laugh and a joke with you.
The pub itself used to be a quirky place, dark and smokey, more from dim lights and open fires than tobacco, all nooks and crannies, comfortable.
Now all is modern lightness, colour and stripes, somehow all the rough edges have been smoothed over.You will either like it or you will not. I do not........
My rating 8. A great place for beer if you can stand at the bar. A great place for food, if you can, or will, afford it, but no longer such a great place to enjoy it all in.

13 Sep 2008 15:41

The Plough Inn, Hathersage

Country pub which seems to be trying to leave it's roots behind. A large building, it has a fair-sized carpark, lovely location and an excellent, secluded beer garden. For me, that is where the plus marks stop.
I usually enjoy visit's to 'Sawdays' recommended pubs, but not this time. For instance, in a pub, which this claims to be, I like to be greeted with something along the lines of 'What will it be then', not have two menus shoved in my hand with the comment that 'the restaurant is full, sir, you'll have to sit here'.
Three real ales were on hand, I tried the TT Landlord but is was rather tired. The food was fair, no more than that, and the sevice was smooth, too smooth, no real welcome in it.
My rating 6. This comes largely from it's location and the feeling that on another day it might be better.
A real disappointment..........

13 Sep 2008 15:07

The Bull, Downton

Yet another food-led roadside pub. A big plus is it's large, if a little inconveniently placed carpark.
Real ale choice limited, on my vist only one, although on my recent visit the quality was excellent. Generally however, drinkers seemed well catered for.
The food was good, the menu short but simple. Friendly staff and a spotlessly clean interior helped make an enforced stop something of a pleasure.
My rating 7. Expect more as time goes on, The 'Bull' feels like a work in progress.........

13 Sep 2008 14:38

The Turnpike, Kidlington

Large roadside pub with sizeable carpark,conveniently sited on a roundabout.Uninspiring choice of real ales whose quality barely barely matches the choice. Ordinary choice of lagers, spirits, ciders and soft drinks. The food is little better, van delivered fare is plonked on your table by uninterested staff.
My rating 5. With poor beer, ordinary food, no atmosphere and staff who seem as if they would be happier almost anywhere else, the Turnpike's only real asset is it's location.
A great pity, the afore said location deserves better............

13 Sep 2008 11:22

Bar Vin, Bournemouth

Closed. Rumoured to be reopening as a Lloyds Bar.

13 Jul 2008 10:21

The Anchor, High Offley

A simple, old-fashioned canalside pub, it serves beer, cider, and if you are lucky 'real' music.
Pubs like this are national treasures.
My rating? 8. It's appeal is limited, but it is damn near perfect at what it does.

2 May 2008 11:37

The Three Tuns, Bransgore

Dining pub that still has it's roots in former times. Locals still drink there, and there is a good choice of drinks.
There were five cask beers available earlier today incuding Deuchers IPA and TT Landlord, backed up by the usual choice of lagers etc. No problems with the quality either.
The specials menu is kept short and in half a dozen visits the food has never been worse than excellent, but it is expensive. But you don't get this level of food on the cheap. Never have, never will.
The service is good but the pub was busy today and there were delays, nothing serious though. A small problem I had was dealt with quickly and with a smile.
I most certainly will be back.

20 Apr 2008 21:35

The Langton Arms, Tarrant Monkton

Let me make myself clear, I use this pub about once a month, usually for a meal and a drink, and have done so for many years, and it seems I'm ploughing a lone furrow.
The Langton Arms has changed, no doubt about it, but the changes were forced on it by the fire.
Nowadays, the pub supplies, as it always has, first class food, almost entirely sourced locally. The presentation may not be to everyone's taste but it doesn't alter the high quality of the final product. The food is pricey but no more so than other commensurate establishments in the area.
The cask beers I have found to be somewhat 'samey' and not entirely to my taste, although it appears I have just been unlucky. Nonetheless the quality remains high. In my experience here has never been a problem over replacing a 'duff' pint.
The place is spotless. The staff are always friendly, the management equally so.
My rating? 9, built on it's consistently high standards over many years and adversities.

8 Apr 2008 11:06

The Coventry Arms, Corfe Mullen

Updating my earlier review I find I have little new to add. The Coventry continues to supply otstanding, if pricey food and excellent ales, albeit from a limited choice.
My rating? 8, built on consitently high standards and excellent fare. The signs proclaim it a Gastro Pub, and in the best sense of the term, that's just what it is.

6 Apr 2008 19:02

The Avon Causeway Inn, Hurn

Big pub with good sized car park which stands on the line of an old railway, still has a section of platform out front. Once, it was a lunatic real ale pub, a haunt of bikers, dog walkers and 'CAMRA' types befor CAMRA was invented.
Nowadays it is a sanitised, pasteurised and homogenized ghost of it's former self. Aimed mainly at those eating it still has plenty of room for drinkers, serving the usual wines, lagers, ciders, spirits etc. Had four Wadworths real ales on when I visited recently.
I can say little of the food as I didn't eat. The menu looks reasonable if somewhat ordinary, but there were several diners who all looked happy enough.
The place is roomy, clean, well-staffed and friendly in an off hand, professional manner.
My rating? 6. The 'Causway' does what it claims to do, nothing more, nothing less.

6 Apr 2008 11:43

The Anchor at Shapwick, Shapwick

It's been sometime since I reviewed this pub, but in that time little has changed. The food remains outstanding, if somewhat expensive it is also good value for money. The beer choice remains a bit samey, but the quality is excellent.
The staff are friendly, the landlord is prepared to listen to comments, and seems to be genuinely interested. If you are looking for good food and drink then I can, and often do, thoroughly recommend this pub.
My rating remains 8, although I wish I could make it 8.5.

5 Apr 2008 12:09

The Woolpack, Sopley

Likely to be out of action for some time following a serious fire.

29 Mar 2008 10:11

The Ensbury Park, Bournemouth

I didn't, quite, believe the recent reviews of this pub, which was once my local. I still don't, it's a bloody sight worse.

22 Mar 2008 21:20

Tavern At Tansley, Tansley

My visit here was by no means my first choice for the day, but I'm glad I went.
All the usual ciders, lagers etc and a no more than ordinay choice of cask beers was more than compensated for by the service and, given the cost, the food.
My rating? 7. I'd like to make it 7.5 but I can't. I enjoyed my visit far more than the rating might suggest.

22 Mar 2008 21:11

The White Hart Inn, South Wingfield

A restaurant that thinks it's a pub. Don't be put off by that remark, it gives it a damn good shot.
Two real ales, the usual lagers, ciders and spirits etc. 'London Pride' is not my favourite beer by a long shot, but I had a pint and a half which I enjoyed.
There were locals drinking at the bar, looking entirely at home, but you do have to eat in the restaurant.
The food is expensive, no doubt about that. But, in my experience, well worth it. Superb is the word that comes to mind. Try the lasagne if you don't believe me.
My rating? 9. Based simply on the fact that it was one of my most enjoyable experiences in years of drinking and eating in pubs.
You need to watch your pennyies, pass it up, but you could be missing something just a bit special.

22 Mar 2008 20:40

The Winterbourne Arms, Winterbourne Dauntsey

Smart roadside pub on the A338 heading north from Salisbury. New team since I was last there, exterior attractive, check out the bike. Interior continues the good impression, clean, tidy, with friendly and helpful staff.
The choice of cask beer is unimpressive with a very ordinary selection. Nonetheless, the beer itself was well kept and presented.
The menu looke good and the food itself was excellent, imaginatively presented, and certainly not overpriced. All in all a pleasant experience.
My rating? 7. I would have prefered to give it 7.5 if that were possible. With a a better choice of ale the rating would be higher.

22 Mar 2008 20:21

The George and Dragon, Swallowfield

An odd pub this one, it has a restaurant and a bar which seem to compete for the customers. Go in the front door and, most likely you will be hijacked by the restaurant staff and never find the bar.
That bar is best reached by the side door, it is a proper, if a bit sanitary, bar serving 2-4 ales and the usual ciders/lagers etc. The cask beer is good without being anything to write home about.
The food promises much but, on my two recent visits,fell short of expectations.
My rating? 7. Close, as they say, but no cigar.
When all that is said it is a very pleasant place to be for an hour or two.

20 Mar 2008 11:35

The Fish Inn, Ringwood

A large riverside pub on the outskirts of town, large car-park which, like the pub itself can get very crowded.
A food-led pub that usually does a decent pint of cask beer. There is a choice of 3, nothing special, and the quality can slip on ocassion. The menu is exstensive and varied, on the whole you get what you pay for. Middle of the road prices for middle of the road food. Saying that, you can do lot worse but still pay more elsewhere in the area.
My rating? 7, largely because the 'Fish' does whati t does well, and has done so for a long time.

12 Mar 2008 12:32

The Cross Keys Inn, Mannington

A local of mine, although I don't use it as often as it deserves. It's been said before I know, agem of a pub, in it's own way as quirky, as unchanged and unchanging as the 'Square and Compass' out on the Purbeck.
The 'Keys is all about the landlady. In todays climate of ever-changing licencees, Viv is a one-0ff, a legend in her own time. It is she who gives the pub it's unique atmosphere. Wlakers, bird watchers, bikers, cyclists, steam and classic car enthusiasts all know where the 'Keys is to be found.
So what about the beer and the food? The real ale is limited but invariably first-class, H&W First Gold is the staple ale, there are the usual lagers and ciders and an an amazing collection of spirits.
The food is simple, in the best sense of the word, tasty and inexpensive. Here, home-cooked means just that.
One last thing, it's very much a rural pub, but you are just as likely to be listening to talk of high performance engines, cutting edge technology, this pub supports, in more ways than one, entrants to events such as the Paris-Dakar rally.
My rating? 9. I'd like to give it 10 but perfection, they say, is not given to pubgoers.

12 Mar 2008 12:13

The Original White Hart, Ringwood

I simply can't find anything good to say about this pub, Marstons should be ashamed of themselves. Poor beer, depressing atmosphere, uninterested staff, bland inside, spoiled outside. Can't comment on the food and that is my most upbeat comment
My rating, based on three visits, 2 during the day one in the evening? 3 and I'm being generous.

12 Mar 2008 11:39

The Night Jar, Ferndown

Re my last review, the real ale has returned to something like it's former standard

12 Mar 2008 11:32

The Horse and Jockey, Bournemouth

Big roadside pub with two large bars, mainly for the locals, supports football and darts teams, I'm tempted to call it a community pub. In my recent experience the staff are friendly as have been the customers. There are a few 'chav types', as someone put it, but the are locals, they live there.
The beer is excellent, 3 or 4 cask ale (HSB, Entire stout and Hobgoblin) on my last visit. Usual ciders, lagers, spirits etc. I can't comment on the food, the menu looks to be run of the mill pub-grub.
Clean, quiet during the day, boisterous during my recent evening vist.If this was my local I'd be happy with it.
My rating? 6 built largely on the quality of the ale.

12 Mar 2008 11:18

The Rose and Crown, Charlton

Nice enough, but unexceptional, village pub serving home-cooked which seems to be good value for money.
Three real ales, Moreland's Original, Speckled Hen or GK IPA, samey selection, run of the mill quality, and the usual lagers and ciders.
Friendly staff, good service, with a little patience on both sides, can deal with large parties well.
My rating? 6, which pobably undervalues it a bit.

11 Mar 2008 13:22

The Square and Compass, Worth Matravers

Unlike the previous reviewer I can't say this is my all time favourite pub, but it's damn close. It's near perfect at what it is, an alehouse, remote, old, unchanginging if not unchanged, welcoming. I was there, this Thursday lunchtime, it was as if I'd stepped into a timewarp. Three cask beers and a 'real' lager (Duchy Original), all served straight from the barrel.
My rating 9. It might have been 10 but it's appeal is probably limited, and perfection, they say, is out of the reach of man.

7 Mar 2008 00:36

Finn M'Couls, Ringwood

By and large I've avoided this pub since it was the 'Red Lion', avoided it on principle. Not a bad pub for a quiet drink in the afternoon, the 'Summer Lightning' seems to be consistantly good. A decent pub when quiet, noisy and unattractive when busy.
Like many others I dislike, to put it mildly, the fake Irish tat. Come back the 'Red Lion', what did you do deserve this.
My rating, 4, built entirely on the 'Summer Lightning'.

2 Mar 2008 21:14

Drusillas Inn, Horton

Difficult to know what to make of 'Drusilla's' at the moment. Is it a restaurant that thinks it's a pub, or a pub that would like to be a restaurant?
The cask ale is usually good, the lager always seems to include one that is a little out of the ordinary, but in both cases the choice is limited.
The menu looks interesting, there is a specials board, and the reports I hear of the food fall into the 'I enjoyed that but it was pricy', category.
The landlord and his staff are friendly and efficient, at least in the late afternoon and evening.
My rating 6, based on three recent visits, all I'm afraid when it was quiet.
A promising pub, I look forward to getting to know it better.

29 Feb 2008 11:48

Horton Inn, Horton

To borrow dixon75's phrase, I want to like this pub, I really do. I remember what it used to be like.
The choice of cask beer is limited, though usually well drinkable. Going on my last two visits, Guinness seems to be the top selling drink, at least in the late afternoon.
On both ocassions the staff have seemed friendly, but not busy. The restaurant is popular, but going on my last meal there, some six months ago, I can't see why. Easy to get to, easy to park I guess.
A souless roadside dining pub, H & W do it much better.
My rating 6. I didn't want to kock it back as I've not recently been there when it was busy.

29 Feb 2008 11:12

The Elephant and Castle, West Moors

Another HW Wellfed pub, somewhat better than its clone, the Pure Drop in Ferndown. The beer varies little, not bad but it would sometimes be difficult to tell which one you were drinking.
They do sell a lot of 'lager', though a fair proportion seems to finish up on the pavement outside. Platic food from a plastic menu is the order of the day. Saying that, I've heard good reports regarding the carvery.
In one area the 'Ellie' does have a good reputation, that of a community pub. More power to their elbow for that, but surely West Moors deserves better in all other respects.
My rating (on three recent visits). 5. That score rsets largely on its community pub status.

29 Feb 2008 10:53

The Pure Drop, Ferndown

Large red-brick roadside pub with a big carpark, an HW Wellfed establishment. H W Wellfed=Marstons=W & D. and that about says it, cloned menu, cloned beer and no atmosphere at all.
Saying that it was crowded on both my recent visits, crowded with youngsters who seemed to be having a good time and sprinkled with older folk, not old, merely older, mostly dining. They looked as if they felt out of place, as did I.
Two bitters, Ringwood Best and Pedigree, both looked ok but were more or less tasteless, interchangeable even. Didn't try the food, plastic menu's put me off.
My rating (on two visits) 4. A very sad shadow of its former self.

29 Feb 2008 10:26

The Old Barn Farm, Three Legged Cross

One of the three pubs closest to me, not the worst, by no means the best. After a poor experience about six months ago I ventured back in Saturday last and got a pleasant surprise. TT's Landlord, an excellent pint and a half of an excellent beer. The cask beer quality here has always been pretty good but the choice poor. Glad that's changed.

The place was cleaner than ever and the staff were cheerful, if not that quick. Can't comment on the food, still the standard menu. I will say I have had some enjoyable meals here and a couple of complete bummers. Competes in the same market as the Hall & Woodhouse Dining Pubs but comes off a poor second to most.

That TTL was great though, you don't get that in H&W pub..........

My rating? 6, built largely on the quality of its cask beer and its friendly staff.

24 Feb 2008 20:43

The Stocks Inn, Furzehill

A pub, once a regular haunt of mine, that seems little affected by the smoking ban. My visit was at the same time I always used to go, about 17:00. Same crowd at the bar, noisy and cheerful as ever. Like so many pubs it seems cleaner and lighter now.

Three real ales on, I had a couple of pints of the guest, Barnstormer by Bath Ales, which was in good condition and well to my taste. Unfortunately the old problem here of serving short pints seems to be back. Mine were topped up without argument, or apology.

I'm unable to comment on the food it was to early but in the past it has aways been somewhat better than run of the mill.
My rating? 6 thought it deserved a little better, nic full pints would have bumped it to 7.

21 Feb 2008 16:54

Worlds End, Almer

A large, roadside Hall and Woodhouse dining pub, typical of its kind, clean, well run and welcoming with the usual range of Badger beers. My two pints of the seasonal Hopping Hare were first class even if they did try to serve it to me in a 'ladies' glass. My wife's definition, mine was earthier.

The food was what you would expect, certainly not locally produced, but was well prepared and presented and did not seem to be micro-waved. Not a life-changing experience, but hot and tasty, just what we were looking for, nor was it expensive.

A word of warning, at busy times get there early, it's a big pub but is well-known and popular.

19 Feb 2008 16:14

The Night Jar, Ferndown

As I have said before this is a regular haunt of mine and it truly goes against the grain to knock it. The quality of the ales served here is generally excellant.
But, over the last week or so that quality has dropped off. Not sure why, selling right to the very bottom of the barrel is my guess.
I don't suppose, or is it hope, this glitch won't last..........

19 Feb 2008 12:22

The Inn on the Furlong, Ringwood

It used to be a regular haunt of mine, but since the bookshop over the road closed it sort of dropped of my radar. Yesterday, in the late afternoon, must have been my first visit for at least a year. I was pleasantly surprised by what I found.
The 'Inn' seems a lot cleaner now, although since the somoking ban that is true of many pubs. The beer, I was drinking Ringwood Porter, was excellent and the barman friendly.
Th news on the Marstons front is that the pub closes in March for, I quote 'a major refurbishment but we have no idea what is going to happen' unquote. As I fear 'BillyD' may well be right, perhaps I'll take my camera with me when I next go.

31 Jan 2008 12:31

Ship Inn and Hotel, Gillingham

A medium-sized roadside pub on the A30 between Shaftesbury and Sherborne.
Last Sunday was only our third visit spread over a year or so, yet each time we have been treated as if we were regulars. The beer,which has a definite West Country slant, appears well kept, is carefully poured and well presented. Well drinkable if not quite to my taste.
The Ship has a good reputation for food and, if our Sunday roasts were anything to go by, it seems to be deserved. The staff are efficient, friendly yet unobtrusive.
A word of warning though, if you don't like dogs stick to the restaurant, this is a seriously dog-friendly pub. Which, as far as I am concerned, is a damn good thing
As you may have gathered, I like the place and find it improves with acquaintance.

29 Jan 2008 12:05

The Gate Hangs High, Hook Norton

Stayed here for two nights last weekend, the choice of B&B was more or less forced upon us, a very lucky accident.
The beer was excellent, although the choice, Hooky Bitter and Old Hooky, was limited and a bit 'samey'. The quality of the food was equal to that of the beer and seems to be well appreciated as the restaurant was full Sat lunchtime and evening as well as Sun lunch. Cant get in? buy a takeaway roast dinner, lots do.
All in all, a cheerful, down to earth,honest and hardworking establishment that truly knows how to make you welcome, whether you come for a pint, a meal or to stay the weekend.

15 Jan 2008 15:53

The Kings Arms, Ferndown

I understand that the Kings Arms is only closed temporarily, for a major refurbishment and will open under new management.
By the way it is located in Longham, not Ferndown.

15 Jan 2008 11:54

The Pear Tree Inn, Hook Norton

The 'Pear Tree' has been on my list of targets for a year or more. My vist, on Sunday evening, was short, the weather was bad and my cold worse. Nonetheless I was impresessed by both the range and the quality of beer. The Hook Norton Dark Mild was a pleasure and the Double Stout was too die for. Both beers, and another I saw pulled, were in tip top condition, clear, nice head, more southern than northern and the temperature right. I look forward to my next pint there, whenever that might be.
No food Sunday evenings so can't comment but the lady behind the bar was helpful and the locals friendly.

14 Jan 2008 17:38

The Foresters Arms, Frogham

Not that easy to find, I even forgot it was there. Me forget a pub, now that is a first. Once you get there it is well worth the effort. The food is first-rate, old-fashioned maybe but good hearty, English cooking at its best and long may it remain so. This is a pub where a pie is just that.
The full range of Wadworths beer is usually stocked and is almost always in top nick, the staf are always friendly and cheerful. It seems to be a good place to work.
One snag, make sure you book, plenty of other people have found it.
Oh, and watch out for the donkeys, they eat things.

9 Jan 2008 12:26

The Langton Arms, Tarrant Monkton

Another pub I have eaten in, on and off, for years. I find the recent downbeat comments incomprehensible. The staff have always been friendly and efficient. Food has always been good, sometimes much better, although I do agree it is a touch on the pricey side.
The one area I do have problems with is the beer, not its quality, but the choice. Too samey, bitters, usually hoppy and rarely more than 4.5% vol, no stouts, porters or dark ales. Maybe I've been unlucky.
To the landlady I say, keep it up. The complaints probably say more about the their origin than their target.

27 Dec 2007 12:34

Drovers Inn, Gussage all Saints

Just a note to tell Jason, Jo and the rest of their team, thanks for a great Chrismas lunch.As for the rest of you, you get a chance, do yourself a favour, go there.

27 Dec 2007 11:47

The Coventry Arms, Corfe Mullen

Having eaten in this pub for some years, I have to say I am somewhat surprised by recent adverse comments made about the food and the service which I have always found excellent. On the issue of price I would agree, it is expensive, but not, in my opinion, overpriced. Beer is always good, although nowadays the choice is somewhat limited.

27 Dec 2007 11:34

The Tap & Railway, West Moors

I would agree with 'beerbob66' about the food, 'nekst' must have very low standards, but 'beerbob66', don't blame the the managers, blame Punch. Steve and Bev have run a splendid local for over 12 years, the place was fine until Spirit and Punch turned up.
As for the beer, the choice may be limited but the quality varies little, it is either good or better, sometimes a lot better.
Hands off Steve and Bev, they deserve better.

15 Dec 2007 22:36

Drovers Inn, Gussage all Saints

I live some six and a half miles away but this my local pub of choice. The beer varies from seriously drikable to absolutely great, both for choice and quality, and, according to Jason, the choice is about to get better. Never thought that Marstons taking over Ringwood Brewery would have a silver lining but Old Thumper rotating with Sneck Lifter and Old Empire sure looks like one to me.
As for food, generally speaking it is pretty good to excellent, on occassion, even better, and the term local supplier doe not always come close. I've got a photo of my Christmas dinner, more free car-park turkey than free-range.
Pubs don't come a lot better tahn this.

15 Dec 2007 21:47

The Forest Inn, Ferndown

Take it off the list, it does not, nor ever has, existed. They mus be talking about the 'Inn In the Tin'

15 Dec 2007 20:26

The Night Jar, Ferndown

This pub is one of my regular drinking haunts. I'm not a teenager, I miss out on that modern pleasure by some 50 years. I drink 'real ale', not to get drunk but to enjoy the beer, and in this area there is nowhere consistantly better, let alone less expensive. The present staff are excellent, friendly and helpful. I think isolated comments from 2006 should be ignored as out of date, and just that, isolated. After all, this can be a very busy pub and staffing problems are not the responsibility of those remaining to man the walls. By the way, 'bmth123' I was there.

15 Dec 2007 20:23

The Anchor at Shapwick, Shapwick

Hi there, I'm new at this so perhaps a little nervous.
Any comments about the Anchor from before the present regime should be disregarded as not relevant. I've eaten here 3 times recently, each time the food has been excellent, if a little expensive. I agree with 'hockey', at the moment there is nowhere better for food. The beer is certainly well kept but I would question the choice, a bit too 'samey' for my liking.
Nonetheless, I rate the pub at least 8.0. On a good beer day even higher.

15 Dec 2007 19:44

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